- THE LAST TIME IT HAPPENED: The Cubs last swept a series September 2-5, 2021 against the Pirates at Wrigley Field. The last time the Cubs swept a series on the road was also against the Pirates, May 25-27, 2021. The last time the Cubs swept the Phillies was May 27-29, 2016 at Wrigley Field. The last time the Cubs swept the Phillies in Philadelphia was July 25-27, 2000 — at Veterans Stadium. The Cubs have never swept the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park.
- THE WEATHER WILL BE A FACTOR: Here’s the Philadelphia weather forecast for today: “Mostly sunny and hot, with a high near 99. Heat index values as high as 104. Southwest wind 5 to 10 mph, with gusts as high as 20 mph.”
- SCORING RUNS IN BUCKETS: The Cubs have scored 21 runs over the first two games of this series. That equals the number of runs they had scored in their previous eight games.
- AIMING FOR EIGHTY: Scott Effross has appeared in 44 of the Cubs’ 94 games so far. That’s a pace for 76 games pitched. If he gets to 80, he will become the 11th pitcher in Cubs history to appear in that many games, last done by Steve Cishek in 2018. The franchise record is 84, set by Ted Abernathy in 1965 and tied by Dick Tidrow in 1980 and Bob Howry in 2006.
Here are today’s particulars.
Drew Smyly, LHP vs. Bailey Falter, LHP
Drew Smyly’s last start, July 16 against the Mets, was pretty good, though he didn’t finish the fifth inning. That might be all right for teams looking to trade for him as a multi-inning reliever.
As a Brave last year, he made three starts against the Phillies and posted a 4.73 ERA and 1.425 WHIP in 13⅓ innings. That doesn’t sound great, but it was more or less in line with his overall season numbers (4.48 ERA, 1.374 WHIP). Current Phillies are hitting .284 (21-for-74) against Smyly with four home runs.
Bailey Falter. Wasn’t he on that 1970s TV show WKRP in Cincinnati?
Oh, never mind. That was Bailey Quarters. Carry on.
Anyway... Falter has made 31 MLB appearances (six starts) since his debut last year. The results have been mediocre (5.25 ERA, 1.314 WHIP, 11 home runs in 61⅔ innings).
He last pitched 10 days ago in Triple-A. He made three relief appearances against the Cubs last year and in one of them, July 6, 2021 at Wrigley Field he got pounded for five runs in fewer than two innings.
Oh, never mind again because of the 17 Cubs who played in that game, just two (Willson Contreras and Ian Happ) are still on the team.
Today’s game is on Peacock (how to watch). Announcers: Jason Benetti, John Kruk and Ryan Sweeney.
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The 2022 Game Thread procedure will be like last year’s, similar to what we’ve used for Spring Training.
You’ll find the game preview posted separately on the front page two hours before game time (90 minutes for some early day games following night games).
At the same time, a StoryStream containing the preview will also post on the front page, titled “Cubs vs. (Team) (Day of week/date) game threads.” It will contain every post related to that particular game, including the First Pitch Thread and the overflow thread, as well as the recap when it’s published. The recap will also live on the front page as a separate post.
You will also be able to find the preview, First Pitch Thread and the overflow thread in the box marked “Chicago Cubs Game Threads” at the bottom of the front page (you can also find them in this section link). The StoryStream for each game can also be found in that section.
The First Pitch thread will post at five minutes before game time, then an overflow thread at 90 minutes after the scheduled game time.
Discuss amongst yourselves.